Driver accused of trying to run over policemen granted bail

Driver had allegedly refused to obey police orders, after being stopped by a traffic policeman for having dark tinted windows 

Bail has been granted to a driver who had allegedly driven at two policemen in Hamrun on Easter Saturday.

24-year-old Justin James Grima from Tarxien had been arrested on St Joseph High Street in Hamrun, after being stopped by a traffic policeman because his Mitsubishi Shogun had very dark tinted glass windows.

The man had allegedly refused to obey legitimate police orders, refusing to hand over his car keys and knocking over a police motorbike before being arrested.

Grima had pleaded not guilty to charges which included threatening the two police officers, wilfully damaging the police motorbike, reckless driving, refusing to obey legitimate police orders, breach of peace and a number of other driving offences.

On Friday, the court was told how the driver had claimed to have been ferrying a sick child to the Floriana polyclinic.

One of the officers had testified that he had seen a woman seated next to the driver of the Mitsubishi, with a young child on her lap in the car’s darkened interior.

The driver had dropped the woman and child off in the Mile End area before making a U-turn, ignoring police orders to stop.

When the compilation of evidence continued this morning, a Chinese woman working at a nearby shop recognized the accused as being at the centre of the disturbance.

Several police officers also testified today. A sergeant, who had arrived on site after receiving a call for assistance, told the court that the accused had handed over his ID card but not his car keys.

At the end of today’s sitting, a fresh request for bail filed by the defence was upheld against a deposit of €4000 and a personal guarantee of €20,000. Grima was also ordered to sign a bail book three times a week and to observe a curfew. 

A probation officer was appointed to monitor the accused. A Protection Order was issued in favour of the police officers involved in the incident.

The case will continue in June. Inspectors Pierguido Saliba and Matthew Galea prosecuted. Lawyers Franco Debono and Amadeus Cachia were defence counsel.

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